Subcommittee Rejects Cost Shift Onto Local Health Departments

The House Appropriation’s Health and Human Resources Subcommittee voted at the March 6 decision meeting to reject the Department of Legislative Services (DLS) proposal to require local health departments to absorb costs of contractual employee health insurance.

The proposal amounted to a $1.6 million cost shift to local health departments. It would have further reduced state funding for health departments (already subject to a funding freeze at last year’s levels in the budget reconciliation bill), and would have likely resulted in service cutbacks.

DLS proposed the cost shift at the February 1 budget hearing for the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene’s Office of the Secretary.

The House Appropriations Committee will have a meeting Friday on all the subcommittee decisions. The Senate Budget and Tax Committee and subcommittees will hold decision meetings next week.

Prior coverage on Conduit Street: Analysts Propose Cost Shift Onto Local Health Departments